All Saints in the 21st Century

The Memorial garden

In 2004 the PCC decided to create a garden at the front of the church which could be used as a memorial.  The new wall and tiered seating incorporates the Memorial to Wallis Wilson as well as providing a place where flowers can be left. 

 

 

The Running Man

 ‘I am come that you may have life, life in all its fullness,’ Jesus declares as he joyfully leaps from the cross, his face broken by a huge grin and his arms open in a welcoming gesture.

 

The sculpture of Christ on the tower cross of All Saints’ Dedworth is named Crucifixion/Resurrection.  It was installed for Easter 2010.

The sculptor was Gill Ledsham (Artist in Residence at Windsor Boys’)  assisted by Parus Sharma, Victor Walker and the Windsor Boys School.  Gill explains – in deciding how to portray Jesus Christ as a man dying, as a criminal, but also the Lord God, the views of some 200 students were taken into consideration.  This image of kindness, generosity, hope and forgiveness, coming off the cross is the result.

This verse from the gospels was especially directive: “I am come that you may have life, life in all its fullness” John 10:10.  The resurrection is a joyful victory, joy such as that found on the sports field where team sports are played.  Arms are flung open with the intention of embracing fellow team mates.  In this work Jesus is leaping from the cross, running to embrace his friends, arms wide, and laughing with joy.  The crown of thorns is now the victor’s olive crown.

 

 

 

The Porch.

In 2011 the church was enlarged with the Porch – a development for the community.  Two consulting rooms are available to hire and the Unity Room has been updated and turned into a smart cafe.  The patio as was is now a secure courtyard with the Fig Tree growing extremely well in the centre.  The new circular seat (remembering John Tilley  – a long time church Treasurer) was installed on the weekend of the celebrations at Harvest 2011 to declare the Porch open.

 

 

 

 

Wall paintings in Link Room

 

In February 2015 Carolyn Carter was asked to create murals to adorn the walls of the Link Room.  These depict various scenes from Jesus’ life.  Selections of images from this work are below.  Carolyn lived locally in Dedworth and was a regular member of the church for the first 20 years of her life before going to university and then living in Bath.

 

Visit https://www.carolyncarterart.com/  to see other examples of Carolyn’s work.  

 

Crucifixion and Resurrection Mural

The Mural, on either side or the altar, was painted in late October to early November 2015, over 18 days, by Carolyn Carter and was commissioned by the Rev. Louise Brown.  It depicts the journey of Jesus to The Cross on the left-hand panel and the story of The Resurrection, with some of the events afterwards, on the right-hand panel.

The rainbow-like colours of the mural link the two panels as one story, working across the space so that the events and momentum flow from one to the other.  The colours are not in the usual order for a rainbow, the red is on the inside and the blue/lilac on the outer edge.  The blue part of the spectrum is suggested as ‘sky’ to create space and landscape, where a depiction of All Saints Church, Dedworth, and Windsor Castle are set behind.  There is a ‘hill’ effect created by the arc of the rest of the rainbow on which the events are staged. The red at the bottom also communicates the emotion and anger of the condemning crowd.

This reversed rainbow also exists in the natural world, called a ‘Sun Halo’, which sometimes encircles the sun or moon, a visible spectrum of colours is caused by the light and radiance around them. 

In the book of Ezekiel, chapter one, the throne of God is described in a vision the prophet sees… “Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around him.” (Ezekiel 1.28) 

In Genesis 9 God sets a rainbow in the sky after the flood that destroys the whole earth, it is a reminder to man of the promise of God to save the earth – ‘it will be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth’.

The colours, like a rainbow, that run through the mural therefore signify PROMISE and GLORY.  God’s PROMISE to save is ultimately fulfilled in sending Jesus, who’s name means ‘God Saves’, and in chapter one of the book of Hebrews, Jesus is also described as the radiance of God’s GLORY.

The colours flow through the events of Jesus’ journey to the cross and into the tomb, as depicted on the right-hand panel.  Here the resurrected Jesus is depicted also appearing to his friends after he was raised.  John says of Jesus, in his gospel, “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind”. The visible part of the light spectrum, these colours also represent Jesus as the LIGHT of the world.  Jesus said of himself “I am the light of the world.  Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8.12)

The colours then flow out of the place of Resurrection to us, 1 Peter 2.9 is paraphrased here “[God] called you out of darkness into his wonderful light”.  Jesus said of those who believe in Him “You are the light of the world”.

Jesus said about himself “I have come that they may have life’ (John 10.10) and ”Because I live, you also will live“ (John 14.19).  This PROMISE is for us! Peter states to everyone who could hear him, as he spoke to the crowds at Pentecost, recorded in Acts 2, “The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off”. This is the PROMISE of eternal life, and that life is in Jesus. (1 John 5.11-13). Paul later writes “The same Spirit of God who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you” (Romans 8.11) and again..”God has chosen to make known the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of GLORY” (Colossians 1.27).

 

      

Note – the left hand panel photo shows the work at a stage before completion.  The close-ups below show more detail.

 

 

 

The Fig Tree Chapel

In 2016 it was decided to complete the design originally planned for the 2000 building works.  Namely to add sound proofed sliding doors between the Link Room and the main church hall.  This would enable the Link Room to be used as a chapel and quiet meeting room – whilst allowing the partition to be opened up at times when the church hall needed to accommodate a large event.